Online physio
Online physiotherapy for musculoskeletal (MSK) injuries and sports injuries

Hand and wrist pain is common and ​at one time or another, most people have had a minor injury to a finger, hand, or wrist that caused pain or swelling. Symptoms can develop from everyday wear and tear, overuse, or an injury.

In children, most finger, hand, or wrist injuries occur during sports or play or from accidental falls. Any injury occurring at the end of a long bone near a joint may injure the growth plate (physis) and needs to be evaluated. Older adults are at higher risk for injuries and fractures because they lose muscle mass and bone strength (osteopenia) as they age. They also have more problems with vision and balance, which increases their risk of accidental injury.

Sudden (acute) injury
 may occur from a direct blow, a penetrating injury, or a fall, or from twisting, jerking, jamming, or bending a limb abnormally. Pain may be sudden and severe. Bruising and swelling may develop soon after the injury. Acute injuries include:

  • Bruises. After a wrist or hand injury, bruising   may extend to the fingers from the effects of gravity.
  • Injuries to ligaments, such as a skier's thumb   injury.
  • Injuries to tendons, such as mallet finger.
  • Injuries to joints (sprains).
  • Pulled muscles (strains).
  • Broken bones (fractures), such as a wrist fracture  .
  • Dislocations.
  • Crushing injury, which can lead to compartment syndrome.

Overuse injuries 
occur when too much stress is placed on a joint or other tissue, often by "overdoing" an activity or repeating the same activity. Overuse injuries include the following:

  • Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by pressure on a nerve (median nerve  ) in the wrist. The symptoms include tingling, numbness, weakness, or pain of the fingers and hand.
  • Tendon pain is actually a symptom of tendinopathy, a series of very small tears (microtears) and potentially some degeneration in the tissue in or around the tendon. In addition to pain and tenderness, common symptoms of tendon injury include decreased strength and movement in the affected area.
  • De Quervain's disease can occur in the hand and wrist when tendons and the tendon covering (sheath) on the thumb side of the wrist swell and become inflamed.

Wrist & Hand Pain Explained

Wrist & Hand Pain

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Treatment for a finger, hand, or wrist injury may include first aid measures; medicine; "buddy-taping" for support; application of a brace, splint, or cast and in some cases, surgery.

However, ​​Most minor injuries will heal on their own, and home treatment is usually all that is needed to relieve symptoms and promote healing. Treatment depends on:

  • The location, type, and severity of the injury.
  • How long ago the injury occurred.
  • Your age, health condition, and activities (such as work, sports, or hobbies).

If you are unsure of concerned about your wrist or hand pain then contact one of our Physiotherapists who can help diagnose your condition and put together a recovery plan with a specific exercise regime and personalised advice.​

What to do about hand & wrist pain